Bill Douthwaite


Bill Douthwaite FCA MBA joined GJC as an associate to lead our outsourced FD division. He has over 30 years experience in-practice spread between global and national accountancy firms; in-house with JCB and TSB; and as an external consultant to clients in construction, financial, legal, property, service and technology sectors. Bill is a qualified Chartered Accountant with over 20 years experience at the top management level in SME businesses.

Bill has significant expertise at each stage of the business cycle, from startup and acquisition right through to exit, and a proven track record in profit growth, cash flow improvement and the supply insightful management information which makes a real difference to clients.

Profit improvement

• Using simple budgets to focus management on key activities and targets

• Working with owner managers to identify main profitability and growth areas to achieve a 20%+ improvement per annum

• Identifying and evaluating potential changes to the customer price/commission mix.

• Turning a company with negative reserves into a £250,000 a year profit business


Change management

• Changing six small local estate agencies into a corporate regional operation

• With business owner changed major product focus to increase volume, daily rate, work predictability and reduce debtor days

• Setting up reporting structures to integrate merged and acquired businesses


Business restructuring

• Typically do 2 to 4 acquisitions, mergers, sales or JVs for clients per year

• Use & introduction of LLPs into businesses that need ownership flexibility

• Creating structures to pass (part) of business to next generation without losing control


Profit extraction and joined up wealth management

• Maximising use of pension limits & tieing in owner age and pension pots and use of 25% tax free pension fund extraction

• Use of property SSIPs

• Use of LLPs and companies for income planning in growing business ownership

Finance Director –  2002 to date

• Analysing business information and using patterns to question and suggest areas for improvement/ growth

• Working with business owners to create plans and activities to grow their business in a sustainable way.  Altering businesses structures where appropriate.

• Identifying 5 year and exit plans and helping deliver them in a tax efficient way

• Taking an MBO (cost c £550k with £500k borrowing) through to a sale in 5 years (value c £2.8 million)

• Acquiring, merging, creating JV, MBI, MBO and disposing of businesses for many clients in many sectors

• Actively managing owner wealth transfer from business to outside the business tax efficiently

• Helping turn around failing businesses


Internal Auditor then Financial Controller –  1996 – 2001

• Managing and reporting £100 million turnover business part of team to move whole operation to World Parts Centre

• Created a new set of non-financial key performance indicators to generate quicker responses to business driver changes


Financial Manager 1988 – 1995

• Converted separate manual accounting systems for six recently acquired businesses to a single computerised system for 70 profit centres.

• Introduced budgeting and monthly monitoring to non-financial managers

• With senior management changed six small local agencies into a corporate regional operation

• Acted as trainer to non-financial managers in understanding financial results and budgeting


What does it mean to be ‘lonely at the top?’ Bill Douthwaite explains this, as well as how to implement delegating systems.